Santorini? Cheap? Yes, even though I hate using the word "cheap" to head off this article, since that conjures up images of sleazy motels off some highway. But these budget choices are all little gems on the island of Santorini, letting you really relax during your stay on this Greek island - you won't be worrying about how much it's costing you.
1. Apanemo Hotel
Copyright Apanemo Hotel, Santorini, Greece. Used by permission.
Among cheap Santorini hotels, the Apanemo Hotel is a standout. This inexpensive hotel at Akrotiri on Santorini offers an amazing caldera view of Santorini itself and a triple-level infinity pool. When examining cheap Santorini hotels, make sure they offer a caldera view if that's important to you (and it should be, on Santorini!) - otherwise, they may be located on the "other" side of the island, with sea views but not a view of the caldera itself. In addition to being close to the newly-reopened site of Akrotiri, it's also close to a number of small beaches and the photo-friendly lighthouse at the far end of the Santorini crescent.
2. Matina Hotel
Matina Hotel, Santorini - used by permission.
This small Santorini hotel is near the famed black sand beach of Kamari on the east side of Santorini island. You won't get a caldera view, but you do get easy access to the beach - something that isn't possible when you're up high on the cliffs, however scenic. The ancient city of Roman-era Thera is nearby. The Matina Hotel offers family-run, responsive service starting as low as 55 Euro a night.
Copyright Stelios' Place. Used by permission.
This cheerful and lively Santorini hotel is located at Perissa Beach, steps from the sand. Since Perissa is a Santorini nightlife hotspot, the hotel probably has the most appeal for the younger groups, but older budget-conscious travelers may appreciate the rooms starting at 28 Euros and up. The pretty pool area is also very inviting.
Cool Cat Hotel, Santorini; used by permission
This small hotel on Santorini offers a handful of rooms in a garden setting. In high season, there's a minimum two-week stay, so it's not for everyone, but it gathers ardent fans who have more time to spend on this Greek island.
This inexpensive Santorini hotel offers the full caldera-view which many visitors to Santorini consider to be absolutely essential. Many hotel keepers take full advantage of that and charge 300, 400 or more Euros per night. The best rooms here start at about 90 Euros a night; some are as cheap as 60 Euros.
Located just a few minutes outside of Fira, this new, small hotel has a great pool and a friendly and helpful staff. Popi meets the ferries and hydrofoils and will drive you to and from the port where the Santorini ferries come and go. Room prices can be as low as 30 Euro a night. They also can get an inexpensive rental car for you, starting at about 25 Euro a day.
Photo courtesy of Santorini Hotel Kykladonisia
This pretty hotel offers enough whitewashed walls and blooming fuchsia bouganvillea to keep the most ardent "Mamma Mia the Movie!" fan happy. It's centrally located in Fira and offers easy access to the town and its attractions. It's sometimes called the "Santorini Hostel" and it does offer dorm-style rooms starting at just 20 Euros per person per night. Regular rooms and even self-catering kitchenettes are also available, all at very low prices.
8. Hotel Eugenia, Fira
Located in Fira, this hotel starts at about US 130 per night, depending on the exchange rate
. It offers a sea view, but be aware that it is facing east, away from the caldera, a great spot for watching sunrises but not so good for the famous Santorini sunsets. But the Wi-Fi is free and there's a swimming pool and bar to make up for the lack.
Located in Firostefani, you won't have a caldera view but you will have nice new rooms in this small hotel built in 2010. Each room has a balcony and air conditioning, and there is a small pool with a matching small pool bar. Their listed rack rates actually are into the middle of the range, especially for a non-caldera side hotel, though they do say to ask for a discount. One reason I'm including them here is that they are open in the winter, providing a reasonable option for an off-season stay.